On January 23, India TV ran a show – ‘Unheard stories of PM Narendra Modi’ – where the channel broadcasted an over 20-minute special on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s life, starting with his childhood days. At 4:10 minutes India TV flashed an image where the PM could be seen sweeping the floor.
Using phrases of fawning, the anchor attempted to narrate the story of a boy whose life was full of struggles. He described young PM Modi as a “hero in the making.”
India TV, however, used a photograph of the PM that wasn’t his at all.
One of the photographs used by India TV to showcase the prime minister’s struggles was a morphed image. The image where PM Modi can be seen sweeping the floor was viral on the internet since the run-up to the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. However, an RTI petition filed in 2016 revealed that the photograph was fake.
According to Janta ka Reporter, the RTI reply said, “…It is stated while the information sought does not form part of records, it may be noted that the said photograph is morphed and the person in the photo is not Mr Narendra Modi.”
The image used by India TV was, therefore a photoshopped image that has been debunked three years ago and the same was reported across mainstream media outlets. This isn’t an isolated incident of India TV using incorrect information in its broadcast. Last year, the channel had incorrectly claimed that Pakistani posts of Kirpan and Pimpal were destroyed by the Indian army in an immediate retaliation to the beheading of soldiers. As it turned out, Kirpan was actually an Indian post and the army itself confirmed there was no reaction.
Update: India TV deleted its broadcast from its English website and YouTube channel after Alt News’s story. However, it can still be accessed on its Hindi website.